number 1030
week 18


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GIOVANNI LAMI — BIAS (CD by Consumer Waste) *
KOCHER & MANOUACH & PAPAGEORGIOU (mini CD by Bruit/Romvos) *
BRUITISME 1 (compilation LP by Rotorelief)
LA TENE — VOUERCA/FAHY (LP by Three:four Records) *
LEDA — CITY/CLEAR (7" by Il Disci Del Baroni)
EDWARD SOL — FAMILY NAILS (CDR by Glistening Examples) *
ERNESTO DIAZ-INFANTE — TUNNELS (CDR by Kendra Steiner Editions) *
BRIAN RURYK — KIKA A ME KA WEHE KOENA (CDR by Kendra Steiner Editions) *
TOM JAMES SCOTT — THE CAROUSEL (cassette by Skire Records)
AOVL — ABSENCE OF VISIBLE LIGHT (cassette by Do You Dream Of Noise?)
K2 — CRUDE SOUP (cassette by Trapdoor Tapes)
THIRDORGAN — YAGAMANIA (cassette by Trapdoor Tapes)
MSHING/SENTENCED FOR LIFE (cassette by Trapdoor Tapes)
LUKE HOLLAND — STIR (cassette by Trapdoor Tapes)
TRAPDOOR TAPES DOCUMENT ONE (cassette by Trapdoor Tapes)


This is, so I believe, my first introduction to the sound world of Clara de Asís, born in 1988
in Spain and living in France these days. She plays prepared electric guitar and sometimes
she plays with other people, such as Noël Akchoté, Antez, Jean-Marc Montera, d’Incise,
Karen Jebane, Emmanuel Lalande and Nicolas Dick. In her solo work she seems to be more
interested in an electro-acoustic approach to the tabletop guitar. 'Uno Todo Tres' is a forty-
four minute piece, which starts out very quiet, almost inaudible for the first ten or so minutes
and then gradually picks up in volume and this slow meditative drone becomes louder and
louder, until it reaches its peak at say thirty minutes. It is still not very loud, but it fills up your
space with these rich sounds, before going in the ascent and towards the end it obviously
dies out again. All of this happens in a very peaceful and gentle way; I played this at a rather
medium volume, allowing the tones to be part of the environment, rather than having them
on top of everything that surrounds me. It is a very minimal work and perhaps it is not really
much different from the works of Eliane Radigue, Jim O'Rourke, Phil Niblock (though the music
of Asís is quieter), some older Jim O'Rourke or Orphax. It is not the radical new insight in the
world of drone music, but it is all together a most wonderful piece of music. (FdW)
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This is perhaps an odd ball for Celer; at least if you are used to a release with one piece
spanning somewhere between forty minutes to something that easily doubles that. Here
however he has a release that is only twenty-five minutes long and has ten pieces. These
were made for an exhibition of paintings by Taichi Kondo, whose work I don't know (and I
am not sure if Google shows the right ones; the cover has one of his paintings of course,
but that doesn't justify a fully informed opinion). Will Long, also known as Celer, was quite
inspired by the paintings and recorded a whole bunch of ideas, but in the end only used the
one that used an organ recording of twenty minutes and recorded a bunch of variations of
that, using a variety of settings and spaces. In each piece there is one movement, rising
and decaying, and sometimes this is repeated within the space of one piece, but each block
is separated by (near) silence, which is of course a clever thing; it makes it easier for the
listener to choose random/shuffle play and keep that on repeat for a long time, so new
configurations keep appearing for the listener, which makes all of this wonderful. The music
is very soft and not outspoken but as such ranks among the best ambient music around
these days. Maybe a few more variations and thus a bit longer release would have been
even better, but I had a great time, much longer than the 'real' length of this release,
listening to this on shuffle and repeat and doing not much else in terms of other things
than listening. (FdW)
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GIOVANNI LAMI — BIAS (CD by Consumer Waste)
Here's a new work by Giovanni Lami, a follow up to his LP 'Mema Verma' (see Vital Weekly
946) and split 7" with Nicola Ratti (see Vital Weekly 951) and again he offers music with a
strong conceptual edge. On his LP he used sampled from reeds of a shruti box, and this
time around he uses sounds that were recorded on magnetic tape, which was then buried
in muddy earth (I assume for some time) and then dug up and played. Soils used were to be
found in Austria, Greece and Italy — not that there is an indication on the cover which piece
of music was buried in which soil, or if perhaps the pieces on this release are a collage of
various excavations. This kind of weather influenced music I always find fascinating — well
actually, all sorts of art that uses these influences. Something that is also not mentioned on
the cover is what Lami recorded on these tapes. If anything at all; maybe he just buried some
cassettes from his favourite (dead?) rock heroes and see what kind of transformations that
would result in. Maybe he just buried blank cassettes and used these to record his music on?
Somehow I would think this has all to do with sound material of his own creation. The seven
pieces that are the results of this gardening job sound quite fascinating, I must say. There is,
I'd say, obviously, an element of darkness in these pieces, but I guess you expected that
already. In each of these there are a few dark rumbles to be noted, which push away any of
the original sound that was on the tape. Sometimes this sounds like a recording of music in
a restaurant (such as in 'KRR5') or the manipulation of acoustic objects, such as in 'LLR3'.
Sometimes the actual playback of a tape causes some irregularities ('BHH1'), shifting back
and forth in changing speeds, thus adding another kind of processing. It is of course the
concept here that adds to the fun — the idea itself is very important to 'understand' what
you are hearing, but I think even without knowing that I would still be very pleased with this.
The regeneration of lo-fi sounds, taped on cassettes and played back from them, the low
resolution of the noise, it all makes up for some truly fascinating music. This is an excellent
dig — pun intended. (FdW)
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The combination of drums and keyboards is a popular one. Just last week we had a release
by Polish LXMP, which we compared with Sogar & Swing, but you could also think Zzz,
Azeotrop, Suicide or Silver Apples and lots more. Guru Host is Mitsuhisa Sakaguchi on
synthesizers and Yoshuyuki Ichiraku on drums and they have eight songs on their 'Meteor
Galley' release. They like their synthesizers to be spacey, but this doesn't go out into the
cosmic land. These keyboards are all quite jazz like and that's something that also goes for
the drums. Sometimes they rattle about in a very free jazz style, but played rather loosely.
It never becomes very aggressive or hard-hitting. The keyboards follow similar patterns.
There are sustaining tones, but in playing the piano it becomes all very jazz like, bouncing
all over the place; sometimes this lead is played by an organ. There are also traces of easy
tune from the nineties revival to be detected in here. Listening to all of this, I wasn't sure
what to make of this. Many of the pieces I thought was too jazzy (at least for me) and I
was more attracted to the quieter, spacier songs such as 'Astrowalk' or 'Halo', but I found it
all in itself perhaps not really something that I particularly enjoyed. (FdW)
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One book is a bit bigger than the other, the latter which one could also describe as an oversized
CD booklet. But surely in the case of Gigi Masin/Mirco Salvadori one could say this quite some
booklet. It contains photographs by Monica Testa and Stefano Gentile, which look great, and
that's about all I can say about the booklet, as all the text in here is  in Italian, and, as far as
I understood, these texts were written by Mirco Salvadori, of whom there is a short biography
in here, also in Italian (from which I distilled he writes about music, and that he has a netlabel).
There are a few short stories and a few poems, and Gigi Masin (of whom I also didn't hear before
either) sets these poems and texts to music. So what exactly is my job here, I wondered. I would,
for instance, love to say these poems fit the music, or vice versa, but I don't know. The music
is very ambient, that much is sure. The piano is the leading instrument in the opening pieces
and on top there is some very sparse electronics, maybe processed from the piano itself, but,
who knows, it might be something entirely different. After I glanced at the texts and the images,
I put the book(let) aside and closed my eyes, and did nothing for some time, just enjoying this
calm music. I was reminded of the work of Harold Budd, surely, with a Brian Eno type ambient/
electronic treatment that was just very sparse; it's not in the way Eno did with 'The Pearl', back
then. In the later pieces on the CD the electronics prevail more and Masin uses samples of string
instruments and wind chimes, all mildly processed. It makes up some excellent, if perhaps not
very innovative, ambient music. Quality is king here, not innovation. Great presentation of the
whole thing, but for a limited reading audience, which I think is a pity.
   The other new release comes with a booklet that is less expansive as the other one, but the text
is in English and it is, more or less, about the music piece, as produced by Tomas Phillips, and if
I understood correctly this all deals with the human voice, or rather 'air'. Voices to recite poetry but
whispering words and recordings of which are picked up by Phillips and then transformed using the
computer. From his previous works, of which a lot are in collaboration with others, we have learned
that the laptop is Phillips primary instrument, but also that he is also very much into the world of
modern classical music, especially into the more silent variation, say Morton Feldman. That's
what this new piece is also about, as it seems not exclusively to be about the use of the human
voice. There is also piano and wind instruments, some of which come to us in a 'clean' way and
sometimes a bit processed and it moves between these ends in a very subtle way, fading from
one to another and one doesn't notice this. Everything that happens here happens with slow pace.
Phillips is not the man to hurry things and when a few minutes are needed to make a tone die out,
as happens after the twenty-nine minute break, then so be it. It's not that this is overall very quiet;
it just happens to be so in a few cases, but mostly this is quite audible and this is a beautiful work.
Quite dark perhaps, even without the drone like/warm glitch references, but the slow pace is all a
bit grim — like an extended funeral march, maybe, but maybe I was distracted by the dark images
of the booklet (including paintings by Richard di Santo — now there's a name I haven't heard in
some time). Nevertheless a great work, easily among the best I heard from him. (FdW)
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Ah, the mini CD, the sadly overlooked medium and here we have one that is also known as
a minimax CD, which has twenty-one minutes of music, and the outer ring is semi-transparent.
You don't see a lot of these around, these days. This one contains three pieces of music recorded
in Athens in December 2013, with the for me unknown Ilan Manouach on soprano saxophone and
Dimitris Papageorgiou on violin along with Jonas Kocher on accordion, and him we do know from
his many releases in the field of improvised music. This one is not different and sees this trio
improvising in a way that is very much like the way free-jazz is played; apparently without noting
the other players too much, not always (or: never) responding to the others and do whatever comes
to mind. That might be the case here, but in all three pieces there is some quiet moments, which
seem to stretch out a bit, beyond the few seconds. Sometimes one of the instruments takes a solo
turn but that doesn't happen too much. It is not always the chaos that one perhaps associates with
this kind of free play of instruments. This is quite some intense music and maybe as such the
choice to do this as a mini CD is a wise one! Intense, short but very good. (FdW)
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BRUITISME 1 (compilation LP by Rotorelief)

Some weeks ago I screwed up a review of an Entre Vifs cassette so badly it took some serious
rewriting and republishing. The good thing however about that was I got back in contact with the
main man of Le Syndicat, with whom I am in very irregular contact for thirty or so years, when
they were one of my heroes from the cassette scene. A decade or so later I was in contact
about some CD releases being involved with a more serious record company, and these days
again about mistakes in a review. I readily admit I haven't always kept up with their latest
releases, even when I was looking at the website of French label Rotorelief and thinking 'wow,
I'd love to review some of their releases' (as in a variety of the label's releases, not just Le
Syndicat ). So the outcome my screw up was that Le Syndicat send me these two releases,
which are slightly older but still deserve your attention. The first is by Le Syndicat with recordings
made between 2011 and 2013. It comes in a black cover and silver ink, which has the distinguished
taste of quality production. I wasn't sure what to expect really, music wise that is. Will this be
along the early industrial music lines or their mid 90's heavy machine rhythms (which sounded
almost like gabber house)? It's not either of these actually, but it uses rhythm quite a bit, though
not always as fast and violent as twenty years ago, but surely as dark as it can possibly be.
Slow pounding drum machines, most of the times, with a really dark and creepy under current,
but sometimes the speed goes up a notch or two, such as in "Legion". Around the rhythm
Le Syndicat spins a web of sounds, of electronics mostly, but not necessarily on-going piercing
sounds, but shorter sounds that wobble on into the mix, get an on the spot transformation and
sometimes I had the idea these sounds had acoustic origins. I would think that this is not the
usual assembly of analogue synthesizers and drum machines, but somehow very much from
the world digital sound processing. Le Syndicat's music has some great, clear detailed sound,
showing how much this project has grown in the last thirty or more years. This is an excellent
   The other record is a four-artist compilation dedicated to 100 years of Futurism, which was
celebrated in 2013. In 1913 Luigi Russolo published his 'The Art of Noise' manifest in which
he declared (in short) there was a need for new instruments and composition to accommodate
the speed and noise of the city and of the factories. Electronics were to become important in
the future, and how true he was. It needed the invention and extensive use of tape recorders
to become all important, and since the 50s, when Pierre Schaeffer and Pierre Henry started
playing around with recordings of acoustic sound 'noise' music took off. As such it is perhaps
not strange that Rotorelief picked out four French musicians, all in one way inspired by Russolo
but also tape-technology as used the French predecessors. Vivenza is perhaps the most logical
choice, as ever since he started in the mid 80s his music sounded like machines (and which
wasn't made by using recordings of machines!). Le Syndicat represents the industrial music
and Brume and Lieutenant Caramel are from the musique concrete area. A fine choice. All of
them produced liner notes, and all of these are (sadly) in French.
   Brume starts out with the sirens of Russolo, but quickly moves over to his 'no silence allowed'
approach of manipulating acoustic sounds with electronic means. Maybe these are no longer
reel-to-reel machines, but computers or such like, and the result is very much what I always
like about Brume. Quite a wall of sound approach, as we know (and love) his music for. Because
of the link to futurism there are also quite some machine sounds. Which brings us to Vivenza,
the second piece on this side, of whom we don't hear that much these days, but in the mid 80s
he was one of the heroes of industrial music, especially because it all sounded like machine
sounds, being played rhythmically, minimally and yet very musical. I am not sure why he is less
active these days (or rather: why we don't hear as much from him). His piece doesn't seem to be
dealing with machine sounds this time, but starts out as a piece of music for sampled orchestral
string instruments, but over the course of the piece it slowly changes in colour and tone, becoming
a lot more alien. It has a curious ambient ring to it. Le Syndicat here appears with a heavy collage
of sounds, without much rhythm, but bouncing all over the noise, and again with many details
when it comes to the sound, just as on their LP. Lieutenant Caramel also have a piece that fits
their tradition, as it uses voices, percussion and tape manipulations and it is perhaps the least
noisy of this quartet, but it offers another variation of the idea of music made with noises. This
too I thought was a really good record. (FdW)
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LA TENE — VOUERCA/FAHY (LP by Three:four Records)

From the ever so active D'Incise comes another group project, and this time it is with Cyril Bondi
(percussion) and Alexis Desgrenier (hurdy gurdy), while D'incise himself plays Indian harmonium
and electronics. Bondi too is quite well known from his many releases and it seems to me that
Desgrenier is the unknown one. He is part of Ensemble Minisym, which performs the music from
Moondog. La Tene have two pieces here, both filling up the entire side of the record. It's hard to
say what this trio does as it moves along a variety of interests. The rhythm is minimal and straight
forward, not a simple 4/4 one, but a more complex one, that reminded me of Velvet Underground;
on top of that there are drones from the harmonium and hurdy gurdy, both of which play repeating
phrases, with a feel that is quite ethnic, folk, mediaeval and jazz alike, all combined together.
But as this is all very minimal it hardly moves around this seems all to be a trance states. These
states can be reached while dancing to the music, I would think, but I sat down and emptied my
head while playing this. Another point of reference is David Maranha solo or his previous group
Osso Exotico. The music of La Tene has a pretty straightforward feel to it; there are not a lot of
productional tricks applied here, but it is what it is and that is great. All of this is quite intense
music, of an excellent haunting, minimalist quality. This is best played at a loud volume, I would
say. Excellent record! (FdW)
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LEDA — CITY/CLEAR (7" by Il Disci Del Baroni)

Behind Leda is Sofie Herner, who is "the younger half of the Malmö/Gothenburg duo Neutral",
and who in 2014 released a cassette on Ingen Vag, which not a lot of people heard (I'm quoting
the information here). I never heard of her, or her band (although maybe it is not easy to find the
name Neutral in the VW archive). There are two songs on this 45rpm record. 'City' on the A-side
has a rhythm from a synth, which sounds a bit fucked up through intentional 'bad' amplification
making it a metallic and there is some sort of vocal humming along. Unlike what the label says,
I am not sure if there is a guitar in there. I think it sounds pretty stoned but this song has a
great quality.
   On the other side we find the song 'Clear', which also sounds like it is not the world's greatest
studio this was recorded in, but the overall tone is much more mellow, with a fine mellow synthesizer
line, a flowing melody on top and Herner's vocals a bit more up-front in the mix, making this all
together more of a 'song', whereas the other side is perhaps better be called a 'piece'. Semantics
of course, but I quite enjoyed both of these, erm, 'numbers' and it surely made me curious about
that 'unheard' cassette, or any other release Leda did.
   This is the tenth 7" release by Il Disci Del Baroni, who is keeping their high quality. Still limited
to 200 copies, for all your guaranteed collectors value. (FdW)
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EDWARD SOL — FAMILY NAILS (CDR by Glistening Examples)

Here we have two new releases on Jason Lescalleet's Glistening Examples label by foreign artists.
Recently Ukraine's Edward Sol surprised me with his collaboration with Brume (see Vital Weekly
1018) and now he comes up with a new solo work. It expands further on that LP and shows the
development for Sol clearly. In the older days it was somewhat cruder and noisier, but these days
he uses his 'reel tapes, cassette loops, analogue synth, sampler and contact and acoustic
microphones' to craft an interesting collage of various sounds and melting them together into one
unified piece of music. If I understand well this album has to do with conflict, either within Sol's
family or in his land. You choose. There are five pieces on this release, clearly with the idea of
having this pressed up as a LP, if you look at the lengths of the pieces and the first four ('side
A') show Sol at his best. These pieces are short and to the point, combining low end bass sounds
with electronics transforming acoustic sounds, spoken words, a solitary organ on the side and
sounds from the war zone. These are pretty intense pieces and are more than excellent. The final
piece, 'Right Leg's Shorter' is twenty-one minutes and I thought it was a bit long for what it was.
It used a variety of loops and electronics, but it seems that is sometimes too static in approach,
before moving on to a next section. I think there is enough material in here for a really good piece,
but the piece could have been a bit shorter than what it is now. Nevertheless I think the whole
album is very good.
   Riccardo Dillon Wanke we know for his work with Amuleto (together with Francesco Dillon) or his
various solo releases. On his new release 'Oxidation States' he explores the 'nature and the behaviour
of an element. The same element could act differently depending on its state. I translated this idea
to sound. A substance can change its character from harsh and strident to soft and gentle, while
also staying the same'. I am not sure if I would know how this works, but Wanke uses a harmonium,
organ, piano, synthesizers, electronics, cymbals and objects here to make his point. Unlike Sol,
Wanke's music is more single minded about atmospheres, drones and such like. Yet what he does
is not very strict and static, as happens with some other droneatarions. Maybe it is because Wanke
has a background in playing improvised music and as such he uses the format of improvisation in
his solo work, freeing up his sound a bit more? I think that is it, but it makes up some fine atmospheric
music, which touches upon the world of post rock, but perhaps not as much as it once did for Wanke.
He uses sine waves and it seems these are pick up from the space in which they are played rather
than from a straight forward line recording. In 'Seven Buildings' there is even a hint of rhythm, even
when it's very minimal, but it also breaks a bit of the serene patterns of the pieces before this. Field
recordings are present but used very sparsely. This is drone-like music of a great refined nature,
partly owing to the world of improvised music, loosened up a bit and sometimes quiet, and sometimes
a bit cruder, but never going over the top. Perhaps his best work to date! (FdW)
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ERNESTO DIAZ-INFANTE — TUNNELS (CDR by Kendra Steiner Editions)
BRIAN RURYK — KIKA A ME KA WEHE KOENA (CDR by Kendra Steiner Editions)

Recently Ernesto Diaz-Infante was part of the 10th anniversary compilation by Kendra Steiner Editions
and in June 2014 he was in 'Next Door To The Jefferson Airplane Studios' in San Francisco with his
12-string acoustic guitar and recorded the forty-four minutes piece 'Tunnels', which is now released by
the same label. In the past I associated the name Diaz-Infante with the free-jazz end of improvised
music but this is something quite different. This is a very minimal piece of strumming the guitar on end,
not very fast and it seems without many effects, if any at all. It just goes on and on and has lots of
small variations, obviously I'd say, and has some very rich overtones. At only one point it seems that
Diaz-Infante 'looses' it but then picks up the same slow speed again. This is some great minimal music,
I thought. Not in the Steve Reich kind of way, nor Phill Niblock, but strictly a personal thing. For me this
all worked very well, I must say. I fell asleep the first time (which is not necessarily a good or bad thing)
but in my defence I was a bit tired. When I was awake and fully concentrating on the music, I was
sucked again into the richness of the sound and decided to play it again, which is the mark of an
excellent release.
   Of an entirely different nature are the guitar improvisations of Brian Ruryk from Canada, of whom we
recently reviewed a bunch of solo works, as well as works with Fossils. He has here fifteen improvisations,
which sound at times very crude and very stereo separated. It could be that all of these were taped onto
a reel-to-reel tape and then played again using the speed change dial after applying some crude cut-up
techniques. In other words: chaos rules. Ruryk uses his guitar, adds sounds effects and plays field
recordings from acoustic objects banged together, recorded on Dictaphones and played through the pick-
up element of the guitar; everything to make it sound lo-fi. Quite some heavy stuff that is going on here
and one could think this is all in the realm of noise and improvisation but at the same time I would like
to think this is all along the lines of unpolished musique concrete or electro-acoustic music. Think
P16.D4 but slaughtered a bit more and less refined. I very much enjoyed this little onslaught. (FdW)
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Sometimes a review in these pages lists a bunch of instruments and most of the time I have no idea
what they are, especially synth and drum machines and sometimes I Google them, but the Korg MS20
is one of the few synthesizers that I actually know what it looks like; I even have one, which I purchased
for very cheap when no one wanted an analogue synthesizer any more. On the first of these new Hazard
Records releases there are two of them, played by Javier Pinango (1962) who is one half of Druhb and
solo works as i.r.real or in one-off duos of improvised music, such as with Ernesto Ojeda (1984), whose
background is in classical contemporary music and who appears for the first time on Hazard Records.
The label quite correctly notices about this release of two guys playing live for the first time (actually
meeting for the first time) using the Korg MS20 synth: 'well, yes, it has been done before, so what?' and
what you get during these fifty-three minutes is indeed something that I enjoyed but also had the same
feeling about: so what, indeed. Have synth, will play is the adagio of these two musicians, and if punk
gave you the feeling of 'here's three chords now start your band', then this one does the same, I think,
or even more extreme: no three chords required, just switch it on and play. Maybe because I fiddled
around on such a synth before it all sounds a bit familiar, and surely to some this long doodle is a true
master piece, but these noise/drone/textured atmospheric of highly charged tense electrical volts
bursting together works not bad at all. This is something to play with interest, much fun but maybe
also something one easily forgets.
   Antoni Robert heard 'Paper Shoes' by the Yoko Ono/Plastic Ono Band in 1970 and very much enjoyed
the first two minutes of train sounds, and always wanted to do an album of passing trains himself and
now, forty-six years later, he has his album, along with a 3"CDR with a radical remix. You realize that
Robert is not a very young artist. Last year he already recorded an album for Hazard but otherwise has
a low profile. These nine pieces use the sound of passing trains but they are sampled and maybe, so I
was thinking, looking at the titles, sampled from the original Ono piece. They are called 'Ono Piece',
'McCartney Piece', 'Fab Four Piece', 'Starkey Piece', etc, all references to the Liverpool four. I dug out
the original album, which obviously as a true fan I have, and well, it might be that Robert sampled these
train sounds, but maybe not. It is just not entirely clear I'd say. Tracks cross fade into each other on this
disc and not necessarily at the start of a new track point on the disc. Sometimes it stays a bit too long
in the same sample range, without many changes and that's a pity. These nine pieces can be seen as
one long, forty-three minute piece, but effectively could have been a bit shorter, if Robert was a bit
more intense on the editing. The train sounds are not always easily recognized but that's what makes
this great. That, and the stereo separation that adds to the feeling this going from left to right, like a
moving train.
  The twelve-minute remix on the 3"CDR brings out the rhythm to the party and let's get this party on
the train tracks, then. The rhythm pumps away, while some other train sounds acts as hi-hats or toms.
It is all quite minimal, but that's the kind of thing (I guess) one expects that from a techno inspired
piece, right? I can't see people dancing their socks off but I enjoyed the idea of a dance mix from this
very much. (FdW)
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The mystery disc is not something I particularly enjoy. Especially if there is no information at all, but in
this case there is a piece of paper, which spells out the name of the band and the title — listed above
and not much else. Maybe no surprise, following a trio of discs by The Sand Rays, Ray Sands and
Sandray — all thinly disguised the same side of the coin. There is a difference here with the previous lot,
which is that here we have just one long piece of twenty minutes and this piece is not intended for 7",
as the previous ones were. It is perhaps also less playful than the previous releases, with much of this
music being very dark. We are not kept in the loop as to what kinds of sources were used here, but this
is most likely all to do with samples and lots of sound effects. Just what is sampled we don't know, but
the first half is filled with some gorgeous drone material, like a giant wave of water, slowly moving.
An anchor is picked up by the sonar from afar and then, after a full stop, the sunken vessel comes closer
to the microphone and hear some more of the sounds aboard. There are all sorts of debris passing by and
there is mild overload; then we swirl into the ship's ballroom (think Titanic) and the metal clanging become
a small dance piece with industrial rhythms to end with a small coda. From the current wave of material
from this imprint, I thought the mysterious one was the best. (FdW)
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TOM JAMES SCOTT — THE CAROUSEL (cassette by Skire Records)

Apparently there are ten pieces on this cassette, all instrumental, but I must admit I didn't notice that.
I perceived it more as one piece per side, spread out over a variety of changing moods and textures.
The cassette is a lovely medium, but not when it comes to a proper index. That's all right. We have
here the music of Tom James Scott, Skire Records primary recording artist, who plays guitar, piano
and keyboard and the pieces captured here where recorded at home in England and Lithuania with
a very domestic approach when it comes to recording quality. Windows open, children playing in the
next room and the microphone capturing all of this in a fine mood. Maybe some of the field recordings
were added later on, but I am not too sure of that. The addition of home recordings, the domestic life
of the composer, is something that we hear a lot these days, and it always reminded me of Dominique
Petitgand and Tom James Scott is no exception. His music otherwise reminded me again of the English
drone scene, Andrew Chalk, Monos, Ora and Mirror (and many others of course, but you get the drift) —
quiet and peaceful music, even when some of these field recordings are a bit louder than we usually
hear in these circles. A most pleasant journey is had by the listener, eyes closed in Scott's rowing
boat and the man himself toying with sparse electronics. Great cover too! That's sometimes a rarity
with cassette only releases, but Skire Records loves quality packaging. So do we. (FdW)
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Falt is a new label from France (not to be confused with Fällt from Ireland), who love old typewriters,
home dubbing, photocopier machines, glue, tape hiss 'and nice intentional noise', which is always
good in my book. This tape comes with an A3 full colour Xerox page and indeed all is typed on
a typewriter (and not a fancy font by the same name). I reviewed some music by Chemiefaserwerk
before (Vital Weekly 953 and 992) and quite enjoy their somewhat noisy take on the world of field
recordings, synthesizer and electronics, all being put on cassettes for an even more lo-fi approach.
I would like to believe (I might be wrong) that all of this is mixed from a bunch of cassettes, using
a very ancient mixer, with hardly any EQ-ing or additional sound effects. The six pieces on this
cassette are a perfect example of how that works. Some crude field recordings, with or without
some mild distortion, of running water mixed with some organic sounds of an un-indefinable nature
and drone like synthesizers, no doubt those lovely little monotrons and electrical sparks, all
captured on wobbly cassettes, where the magnetic components might not be in the best shape
anymore, but that is what makes this great music. It's all very much a like old school cassette
music from the 80s. As such nothing new under the sun, perhaps, but every now and then I love
to be in a nostalgic mood, especially on a grey Friday afternoon. (FdW)
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AOVL — ABSENCE OF VISIBLE LIGHT (cassette by Do You Dream Of Noise?)

You may ask yourself: AOVL? What the hell is that all about? It's the latest project by C-J Larsgarden,
who before worked as Yrsel, Larsgarden/Rowenta and Ondo; perhaps the latter moniker is best known
in these weekly pages and the only thing the press text says is that 'AOVL is a continuation of now
defunct moniker Ondo', but it doesn't specify why Larsgarden changed the name. I would be interested
to know as to me the difference between both projects don't seem to be that big and it revolves all
about the notion of drone music. I am not sure what Larsgarden uses to produce music, but judging
by these six pieces I would tend to think it is all with guitars and electronics, whether they are
analogue in the form of stomp boxes or loop stations or digital processing using a laptop. The end
result is a set of powerful pieces of atmospheric music, full of drones and sustaining electronics,
occasionally with the guitar being all the more present. It's not something you haven't heard before,
but I must say it's all done with great care and that's all that counts. Larsgarden knows what he's
doing and that shows. It's great mood music for rainy day. (FdW)
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K2 — CRUDE SOUP (cassette by Trapdoor Tapes)
THIRDORGAN — YAGAMANIA (cassette by Trapdoor Tapes)
MSHING/SENTENCED FOR LIFE (cassette by Trapdoor Tapes)
LUKE HOLLAND — STIR (cassette by Trapdoor Tapes)
TRAPDOOR TAPES DOCUMENT ONE (cassette by Trapdoor Tapes)

From the bleak and dark world of Australia's Trapdoor Tapes a whole bunch of new releases (I know
three only would be preferred, but I know also that postage is a bitch days everywhere, so what can
you do?) and this time around I started by names I actually recognized, such as K2, the long going
noise project of Kimihide Kusafuka, already in the business of noise music since 1983. He has
worked many people, not always from the noise world, such as De Fabriek, RLW, The Haters,
Grunt and Brume. On his forty-minute tape 'Crude Soup' he offers two side long pieces of noises
he stuck together using a random process of picking up sounds and placing them haphazardly on
a multi-track sound program. After this is complete, everything is mixed down adding quite some
reverb. His sound sources include both electronic sounds as well as acoustic sounds, albeit the
latter heavily treated. Unlike many of his noise peers, he's (this time) not into the endless mass of
sounds, but an endless shifting collage of sounds, and what seems to be in a very random process.
It is perhaps a bit long at that, but once you get into this, it works rather well. Yes, go down with
the endless flow and you'll be fine, I hope!
   I think it's a while since I last heard from Akihiro Shimizu, also known as Thirdorgan, who has
been going for quite some time, but ten years less than K2. He released many works, maybe over
seventy in total, on such labels as Lebensborn, Open Wound, Old Europa Cafe, Xerxes, Bizarre
Audio Arts and his collaborations are with people like Contagious Orgasm, Dead Body Love,
Government Alpha, Cock E.S.P., Richard Ramirez and others. Apparently there are six pieces
on this tape but it is not easy to tell them apart. Thirdorgan too uses the collage of sounds but
not as nervous as K2 just did, but he layers them a bit more organically together. There are no
screaming feedback orgies on this tape, but a more lo-fi based noise of manipulated tape sounds
going on here, along with some crude electronics. Once again this is not your usual harsh noise
wall, and there is a lot more going on. Quite a fine release, although maybe not something for a
daily digest.
   More old school industrial music, in every sense of the word I should think comes from the quartet
of Word Of Life Church SS (Ben Taylor, Harriet Kate Morgan, Luke Holland and Tom Miller). There
was a point when such a band name sounded really provocative, and maybe it still does to some
(you never know within the current cultural climate), but I was thinking I heard that sort of band
name by now. On discogs one can find a photograph by them, and we stage central a Korg MS20
(or MS10) and lots of other small apparatus being played by the four members and their sound
reminded me of early Throbbing Gristle, SPK and Ramleh. That is to say, power electronics and
industrial music, played rather chaotically, as rules of the scene probably dictate, but there might
be a drum machine in there somewhere too. Everything sounds quite distorted and dirty, which
is no surprise. As promised on the box, I think. It's not something I hear every day (anymore) so
when it comes in such a small doses as this thirty-minute tape I quite enjoy it. Maybe also
because I am too lazy to look for the box with the old ones from the 80s. Nice is perhaps not the
best word; let's say: most enjoyable.
   I believe Luke Holland is the man behind the label here and he has various releases on Trapdoor
Tapes already. Apart from the band we just heard he is also a member of Armour Group and
sometimes works solo as Mshing, or under his own name. For this new release, Holland "draws
conceptually from bleak Australian 1980s film 'Stir'" and uses samples and the late John Murphy's
(SPK, Current 93, Death In June, The Associates, Whitehouse, to name but a few different ones)
EMS Aks Synth. Here I thought Holland was "more minimal synth" as I read somewhere, but that
doesn't seem to be the case. On 'Stir' he uses voice samples, maybe from the movie, to which
he adds quite screaming noise from the EMS synth, which last for thirty minutes, more or less.
Maybe 'minimal synth' means something else for Luke Holland than for other people. It is indeed
minimal in as far as there is not a lot of change. It was the weakest of this new lot.
   As Mshing, Holland has a split release with Sentenced For Life, also from Australia. Mshing's
side is a live recording and it employs a deep synth sound, some far away voice (or so it seems)
and throughout this is all 80s power electronics territory also, but then more akin of The Grey
Wolves, Con-Dom and Ramleh. Great fun is probably not what one says in such cases, but I
found it all highly entertaining, reminding me of such days when a single synth was enough to
start your own noise act. I have no idea who is behind Sentenced For Life, but their music too
sounds a bit muffled, like it has been recorded outside the room it was actually played in, but
that is very much the aesthetics of this scene, I would think. Hard to say what they do, but it is
along the same lines as Mshing, I'd say. A cascading sound of distorted noise wailing about and
here too one might be able to think there are some vocals in there. In concert there might be the
true power of all of this.
   And lastly there is a ninety minute tapes that can serve as an introduction if you have no idea
what you just read but it got you all curious, and it has pieces from previous releases, unreleased
tracks and forthcoming goodies from bands as Military Position, Sentenced For Life, Ebola Disco,
Concrete Mascara, Rope Society, Transparent Flesh Flag, Praetorian Guard, Prognostic Circle,
Word Of Life Church SS, Luke Holland and Andrew Coltrane (I'm quoting here from the website,
rather than typing these names myself). It combines all of the label's interests it seems, and these
interests are mainly to be found in all things noisy, dark, and vague and some intense military
drumming such as with 'Military Position', if I looked right on cover and tape. If you have no idea
where to start with Trapdoor Tapes this might be a good place.
   All of these releases come with low Xeroxed covers, which is the general out look of the label,
and it shares the same grainy sensibility of some of the music. (FdW)
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